In 1974, the Ministerial Association and the Burbank Coordinating Council recognized the need for a centralized source of services for the less fortunate in our community. The Burbank Temporary Aid Center (BTAC) was founded to address these needs.
BTAC’s founders knew Burbank’s then somewhat rural veneer could obscure the reality experienced by some of our neighbors, just as a more cosmopolitan and affluent appearance can do the same today.
From the beginning, BTAC’s clients have included individuals and families, the working poor, the homeless, crime victims and senior citizens.
Founded in 1974 and housed at various times since then in a founder’s garage, temporarily vacant residential properties, and briefly homeless itself, in 1995 BTAC made this storefront property its headquarters. Including a tiny decrepit house and out-buildings at the rear of the property, the site offered a total of 2,700 covered sq. ft., including leaky plumbing, bad wiring and an active rodent population. The structure was stripped to its bones in 2005 for a major remodeling and expansion project.
From approximately 1976, the top photo shows Burbank Fire Fighter Jack Parkes handing over the proceeds of a Burbank Fire Department “Chili Cook-Off” fund raiser for BTAC to the late Lily Fespermann, a BTAC volunteer. They’re in front of BTAC’s fifth location, a home once located at 269 East San Jose (about where the Colony Theater parking garage stands today). The street shown on either side is San Fernando facing east from San Jose.
Since its founding in 1974, BTAC has operated out of many different buildings throughout Burbank. In the 1990s BTAC moved to a commercial storefront on its current Burbank Blvd. site, which included a residence in the rear converted to office space.
In 2006, after an 18-month building effort, BTAC proudly unveiled its new 5,500 sq. ft. facility. It includes a modernized food pantry, client laundry and shower facilities, private interview rooms and other features important to accomplishing our mission.